Thursday, October 24, 2019
Format: Amazon Streaming
No, I'd never seen Creepshow (1982), which, I guess, horror fans find to be a straight up problem. So, I went ahead and put it on this last weekend while Jamie flew to California to see The Dug.
I like a horror anthology film! If you're not into what's going on, you just wait til the next segment. And, honestly, a lot of what folks try to build up as tension in horror but dragging things out in (poorer) horror, I just wish they'd get on with it - so short stories are a great way to go.
Turns out I'd seen all of one segment at some point back in the day on cable (the chapter with Ted Danson and Leslie Nielsen), and parts one or more others. But I don't think I knew that was + when I watched it back around 1989.
I got not much to say. It was fun. I liked the part with the crate monster best, I think. But it's a highly quotable movie that I'm not sure gets quoted. ("I want my cake!" should be a horror catch phrase. Is it one? Is it T-shirt slogan worthy?)
Anyhoo... some terrific make-up effects and some good practical and puppet FX, too.
Format: Paramount Theater - Austin
Viewing: ha ha ha... oh, mercy
Last night Simon and I went to see Bruce Campbell host a screening of Army of Darkness (1992) at the Paramount Theater here in Austin, TX.
Like so many of us who have stumbled across Army of Darkness and Evil Dead over the years, the movie left a "kill the dinosaurs" type of impact on 17-year-old Ryan's psyche when he saw this movie in the theater. Maybe a post for another time, but there's a not insubstantial part of my young-adult years where this movie was part of the lingua franca of my people, and it's one I quoted so much, I've forgotten that some of my personal verbal ticks came from this movie.
The movie holds up incredibly well, and Bruce Campbell may actually have the best Q&A skills I've ever seen. He's heard every question 1000x before, and he doesn't actually play along as "the nice guy" celebrity. He kinda let people know "that's a dumb question". And, man, they really were about 80% dumb questions. But he got paid, so what does he care?
Anyway, Bruce is charming as all hell, and it was a fun night out at the picture shows.
Wednesday, October 23, 2019
Format: Noir Alley on TCM on DVR
Noir Alley host Eddie Muller knows a thing or three about boxing. His father (the senior Eddie Muller) was a longtime sports writer for the Examiner, and a prominent boxing reporter. As he said in talking about this movie - there are movies about boxers and which occur around boxing (Wise's The Set-Up is straight up a great film), but The Harder They Fall (1956) is *about* boxing. And, hey, bonus, it's a really good movie.
The movie features a dynamite cast of actors pulling from old school and modern traditions, as well as former boxers and players from the boxing world all working from a tight script and with a terrific crew behind the camera.
I believe today would mark the 139h birthday of Una O'Connor, a character actress who appears in a number of movies in the first half of the 20th Century. Born in Belfast in 1880, O'Connor made her way to Hollywood where she was in dozens of pictures. Just last weekend I re-watched her in The Invisible Man.
I *always* find O'Connor hilarious, and frankly find her a great reason to watch anything.
Monday, October 21, 2019
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Watched: 10/03/2019 and 10/05/2019
Format: Amazon Streaming (both)
Viewing: Unknown (both)
Decade: 1980's/ 1970's
Marshall and Ryan throw a Halloween (Haunted) House Party with two favorites of the ghosts & real estate genre! We compare notes on a make-believe story that some think bled into reality, and a real story which feels kinda fakey, if we're being honest. But only one has Margot Kidder. Let's talk what makes for a captivating tale of houses with more than plumbing issues, and we ponder the handsomeness of James Brolin.
Amityville Horror Theme - Lalo Shifrin, Amityville Horror OST
Poltergeist Theme - Jerry Goldsmith, Poltergeist OST
Sunday, October 20, 2019
Format: Amazon Streaming
Look, this is one of the most written about movies of the past decade. I'm not really sure I have anything new to add. But I finally saw it, and it was very good. Frankly, it was exactly what I was expecting from seeing the trailers, and I only was marginally off in two guesses I made while watching the film. Still, it's an ambitious film and an uncomfortable film, and I can see why Peele is Hollywood's favorite new director.
Amazon Streaming is including the alternate/ original ending of the film, and, frankly, I think they should have kept that as the final word, but no one is asking me.
Decade: 1980's (so, so 1980's)
I've been meaning to watch this one for a few years as I've not seen much of the work of Monster Squad director Fred Dekker. Dekker both wrote and directed Night of the Creeps (1986), and it does feel like part of the lineage of films by the likes of Landis and Joe Dante - a sort of boutique film by horror movie dorks by horror movie dorks. But it's still broad enough to work even if you don't realize the entire movie is a collection of references frankensteined together to make a narrative.
First - I found this movie to be straight up Rated-R horror movie fun. And I guess, deep down, if a horror film doesn't have anything in particular to say, or isn't going to be a cinematic tour-de-force, give me a good time at the movies. Night of the Creeps absolutely delivers. Aliens. 1950's flashbacks with "the escaped axe murderer" trope on Lovers Lane. Dorky college dudes trying to get into an incredibly d-baggy frat (in my old age, 1980's frat dudes are just absolutely delightful). And references. So many references.
Saturday, October 19, 2019
It's been years since I watched James Whale's Universal Monsters classic The Invisible Man (1933), but it's not because I don't like the film, I just don't always make time for it the way I do Dracula and the Frankenstein films.
James Whale most famously directed Frankenstein (1931) and Bride of Frankenstein (1935) with The Old Dark House (1932) released prior to this entry. I'm unsure if most folks know the impact of Whale on horror, even if they've seen the terrific Gods and Monsters, but he, Tod Browning and a few others were busily defining a genre for decades to come, interleaving their horror work with more traditional films.
I am unsure how The Addams Family movies are considered by my own generation or succeeding generations. They tend to get play on basic cable and I think most people saw them at least once.
In 1991, a 16 year old me saw this movie and it checked off a whole lotta boxes. And, you know, over the years, that hasn't changed in the slightest - in fact, now I get a few more references, a few more gags, and as I don't watch it all that often - the movie hasn't ever gotten stale.
I almost used this movie and its sequel for my "What is Love?" podcast (which I guess I'm not going to do) - after all, who is more in love than Gomez and Morticia Addams? Years into a marriage that's produced two children and with their loving family all around them, that's some very public amore going on between our parental units.
And, of course, in 1991, I'm not sure what else was out there with quite as gleeful gallows humor for the whole family. I certainly found it a delight then, and I'd hope that folks are still sharing this movie with their kids.